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PFNI ‘saddened’ that talk of legacy does not include murdered officers

Squadman (04/01/22 @ 12:54)

Prior to the RUC (who in my opinion were the most professional and bravest police force in the world) being simperingly renamed the PSNI by a supine government, they would not have said that they were ‘saddened’ by this turn of events; they would have said they were ‘bloody furious’ and they’d have every right to be.

jerry (04/01/22 @ 14:20)

I agree with most of what you say but for two items. The politicians in power today were either directly involved in terrorism or were at the back encouraging on the hot heads by a nod and a wink. However Sir Anthony Blair followed on what had escaped his predecessors and achieved a cessation of the rampant terrorism that had existed until then from both sides. That massive achievement and saving in lives as well as the transformation of society both in GB and Ireland should not be ignored. If “letters of comfortâ€쳌, however distasteful, had to be issued to achieve it then it has been proven over the years since to have been a price worth paying. I also note you mention IRA murderers of which there were many but failed to mention Loyalist murderers of which there were also many. How many of them got their “letters of comfortâ€쳌. If criminality, from whatever quarter, can be dealt with in the courts from those times, and it has the evidence, then it should be put before the courts. It is not for politicians to draw a line under it and ignore it as it brings the law into disrepute. That is something this government is good at along with “being economical with the truthâ€쳌..!

ASG (04/01/22 @ 15:38)

There is no mistaking the fact Blair’s government had a favourable leaning towards Irish Republicanism, many of his cabinet were sympathetic to the cause. There is also no mistaking the fact many of the concessions which underpinned the GFA were accepted without much pushback from the U.K. negotiators, even if pressure was being applied by Clinton, the feeling is Republican negotiators only had to threaten a return to violence in order to get their own way. As far as legacy is concerned, it has far more to do with lawfare than anything else. Nobody is seeing the IRA/SF for the murders and atrocities attributable to them throughout the troubles and before and the same goes for Loyalist paramilitaries, their are very few successful historic criminal investigations because the terrorist killers and their supporters have nothing say and nobody can make them say anything but their is a concerted effort to sue the U.K. government at every opportunity and to do so through the civil courts because as we all know the burden of proof is not the same as a criminal matter. There are thousands of cases lodged in the civil courts, Troubles related Republican cases which will cost billions to resolve because a government is accountable under HR legislation, a terrorist organisation and their members are not. The struggle never ended, it took a different direction, the purpose is the same and that’s how it feels living here in Belfast. The Republican view leads in broadcasting, academics, every government institution and there is very little pushback from the U.K. government through the NIO but plenty in input from Varadkar and Coveney in the south.

jerry (04/01/22 @ 18:58)

I don’t see shootings, murders and bombings as were previous. I suspect you are from a certain side and would have preferred your side to “winâ€쳌 whatever the cost to everyone else. The rest of the world has moved on and the southern politicians, and most of the public are ambivalent as to whether the north remains under Stormont, London ( who really do not care) or Dublin (who are terrified they would have to assume responsibility). Basically as long as the bigots and troublemakers don’t create problems we are content.

jerry (04/01/22 @ 23:18)

@The Good Badger As someone who loathes terrorists wherever they come from and my views on the “shinnersâ€쳌 would get me barred but they are the other side of the DUP/PUP coin in politics. Every side makes out a case on violence resuming but ied/firearm type is remote to a very small group. Why should they when they are riding high in polls and their opposition are running around like headless chickens. History and changing views of populations have a way of intruding in the illusions of those who have a particular viewpoint and in Ireland,especially N.Ireland it is brave indeed to try and read the runes and ultimately foolhardy.

paul webb (05/01/22 @ 09:17)

The Catholics now make up just over 40% of the population and that is increasing year on year. Soon the Protestants will be out numbered. SF/IRA appear to be winning the political battle, the Unionist's are divided and SF/IRA looks like it is gradually winning its way into full power both north and south of the border. Then what will happen if they hold and win a referendum on uniting the whole of Ireland. Will we see the Unionists uncover their weapons and start to shoot and bomb their way to a separate Ulster. The evil doers have never gone away they morphed into politicians and community leaders. The legacy of the GFA surrender to the SF/IRA and the dismantling of British symbols of the crown such as renaming the RUC to the PSNI is ongoing.

jerry (05/01/22 @ 14:53)

This is not correct. The religious breakdown in N. Ireland is 6% either no religion or non Christian and Protestant versus Catholic is 48% and 45%. Then you have the differing classes and rural versus urban into the mix. The political support for the various parties is another consideration and belies straight forward religious splits. Next is Southern Ireland. SF is at 32% in the polls ( it’s highest ever) with another 4 years to go before an election. They are the protest vote, the populist in all things to all and not pro EU. The majority of the population are very pro EU and support other parties. A final fact. The elections in both north and south is not by FPTP and therefore defies easy assumptions on who is likely to win. A border poll is an aspiration for some but not practical for many. You also mention guns etc.Where are they? I have no doubt some are about , in criminal hands, but not enough to take forward what you state.. ! You call the GFA a surrender. I see it as an agreement whereby paramilitaries on both sides have been defanged by making the political process more attractive . I don’t see assassinations, IED’d exploding and I see an economy and populace that has benefitted from the GFA.I may not like the politicians in suits who have emerged but I also do not like your assumption that “no surrenderâ€쳌 was/is the way to go forward and I doubt many folk in these islands would agree with you.

paul webb (05/01/22 @ 17:39)

@jerry So the dissident republicans who have still been killing since the GFA are a figment of my imagination are they? The vast majority of people across the UK and Eire just want to get on with their lives in peace. However there is still a small violent bunch of fanatics who see the bomb and the gun as the way to go to achieve their aims. Sadly they will be with us for some time to come.

retired brief (05/01/22 @ 21:34)

Whatever the religious mix, I would suggest the real issue, as is usually the case, will come down to finance. There is no national health service in the south so being ill costs what can be a lot of money depending on how severe or chronic ones problem is. The general state benefits are not as comprehensive as in UK and education is not totally free either. Therefore, when it comes to a vote on unification the religion of the voter may be of secondary importance and if the intimidation of the electorate which would be present in the campaign leading up to the vote is excluded by the actual constituents vote being kept secret at the ballot box, the expectations of some of the protagonists may be frustrated.

jerry (06/01/22 @ 13:13)

@paul webb you answered your own statement “smallâ€쳌 group of fanatics and there are equally small violent criminals groups on the other side. The local vernacular refer to them as “hoodsâ€쳌. However your imagination went way beyond the small and was factually incorrect. That is why I commented.

jerry (06/01/22 @ 13:40)

I agree except with the “intimidationâ€쳌 part. What evidence either North or South is there of intimidation. Voting is not FPTP in either part and is secret and expected as such in a democratic environment. The aggression shown by paramilitary thugs against certain canvassing party members in some areas in the north is excluded from this point.

Jay OldSchoolCopper (10/01/22 @ 14:42)

The murders of brave RUC and PSNI officers must never be quietly dropped. There are threats to officers’ lives every day even now that don’t get into the news just because it’s an Irish thing. Can you imagine if a VBIED was put under the car of a mainland police officer’s car? Pipe bombs thrown into police stations? There’s a clear 2-tier attitude in the UK towards attacks on officers

jerry (20/01/22 @ 14:37)

@jerry Interesting that facts get voted down but raw emotion and one sided “win at all costsâ€쳌 get an uptick. I presumed that as police officers the facts etc would play a part on here. I expect the same emotion type of response from the loony tunes of both sides in the NI tribes. Pity it appears that it is here as well.

Colin Burrows QPM (20/01/22 @ 19:57)

This article refers to the disbanded RUC. This is erroneous, factually incorrect and offensive - The RUC were never disbanded the legislation is clear that the PSNI formation including ‘incorporating the Royal Ulster Constabulary’. Section 1 of the Police (NI) Act 2000 reads: (1)The body of constables known as the Royal Ulster Constabulary shall continue in being as the Police Service of Northern Ireland (incorporating the Royal Ulster Constabulary). (2) The body of constables referred to in subsection (1) shall be styled for operational purposes the “Police Service of Northern Irelandâ€쳌. (3) The body of constables known as the Royal Ulster Constabulary Reserve shall continue in being as the Police Service of Northern Ireland Reserve (incorporating the Royal Ulster Constabulary Reserve). (4) The body of constables referred to in subsection (3) shall be styled for operational purposes “The Police Service of Northern Ireland Reserveâ€쳌. Editorial correction would be appropriate & appreciated. Colin Burrows QPM

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